Retail Employment

Written by Jeremy Horelick
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Retail employment is one of the most dependable sectors, even in poor job markets. The reason for this is that many retail jobs are low-paying entry-level gigs that require few special skills. Thus, it's a breeze to hire on new help as it's needed without surrendering thousands of dollars to training and salary.

Another reason for retail employment's persistence is that individuals and families must still buy nondurable goods, even when times are tough. The major market indices may be a shambles, corporations may be cutting jobs like there's no tomorrow, and consumer confidence may be at an all-time low, but people still need to eat. That means retail jobs at supermarkets, drug stores, coffee shops, restaurants, and cafes tend to be plentiful, even if their pay is paltry.

Other Opportunities for Retail Employment

Another sector of retail employment that boasts continually opening jobs is the durables market. Clothes, furniture, entertainment, and accessories are gobbled up during good times and bad, though more readily during good. That's when money is plentiful in the economy, the dollar is strong relative to other currencies, and markets are either in rebound or full upward ascent. Finding retail employment in places like shopping malls and galleries, clothing stores, gyms, book shops, and arts and crafts stores is also comparatively easy since it demands no highly specialized training aside from customer service skills and basic arithmetic.

Few people if any expect to make a career of low-wage jobs with no benefits, but there's room for advancement in certain retail industries. Sales jobs in particular can be lucrative for those willing to invest the time and attention it takes to learn to sell. In fact, many sales jobs in the retail sector pay better than management jobs that demand 10-15 years of experience and a proven track record.

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